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ABC's When We Rise

When Cleve Jones was growing up, he felt different from everyone else.

Living as a gay teenager in Phoenix, Arizona, in the early 1970s was difficult to say the least. His dad, a psychologist, believed that homosexuality was something to be cured. His classmates in gym class bullied him so much, he pretended to have a chronic lung ailment so that he could stay in the library instead of the gym. And at one point, he said, he felt so alone that he considered suicide.

Human rights activist and author of "When We Rise" Cleve Jones in 2009. Photo by Kristian Dowling/Getty Images.


Jones has been a civil rights activist for over 40 years, and he is depicted as one of the main characters in ABC's miniseries "When We Rise."

His experience as a teenager was similar to that of many LGBTQ people at that time. The American Psychiatric Association considered homosexuality an "illness" until 1973, and throughout the 1950s and '60s, members of the LGBTQ community risked psychiatric lockup or jail if they were "discovered." They could also be fired from their jobs or lose custody of their children. Bullying and violence was also a common threat they faced.

In the show, Jones' character reads about the burgeoning gay liberation movement in Life magazine and is inspired to seek out the movement. Jones recalls that moment vividly from his own life.

Cleve sees the 1971 Life magazine with an article about the gay liberation movement in the ABC miniseries "When We Rise." Screenshot used with permission.

"This magazine, in a matter of minutes, revealed to me that there were other people like me," Jones said in an NPR interview. "There was a community, and there were places we could live safely. And one of those places was called San Francisco."

So, Jones hitchhiked from Arizona to San Francisco in 1973 to start his new life.

Cleve leaves his family behind in Phoenix to move to San Francisco in the ABC miniseries "When We Rise." Screenshot used with permission.

Many LGBTQ people who moved out of red states to cities in blue states in the '60s and '70s helped shape those cities into the same-sex safe havens that we know them to be today.

Cities like San Francisco and New York were seen as places where the LGBTQ community could go to live as themselves and escape some of the oppression, discrimination, and violence they faced back home.

The 1979 Gay Freedom Day Parade and Celebration in front of San Francisco City Hall, which marked the 10th anniversary of the gay rights movement. Photo by Paul Sakuma/AP Photo.

Starting with the Stonewall Riots in 1969, the burgeoning gay rights movement grew inside the cities in places such as the Castro district of San Francisco. There, groups mobilized and spearheaded the fight for their rights over the next several decades.

By 1990, the LGBTQ population was largely concentrated in coastal safe-haven cities, including Seattle, Atlanta, Boston, Washington, D.C., and, of course, New York and San Francisco.

The 46th annual Gay Pride March on June 26, 2016, in New York City. Photo by Bryan R. Smith/AFP/Getty Images.

Today, that trend may be reversing; members of the LGBTQ community are actually leaving those places and moving to smaller, redder cities.

Consumer Affairs analyzed U.S. Census data and Gallup polling information and found that by 2014, large LGBTQ populations had cropped up in red-state cities, including Salt Lake City, Louisville, Norfolk, and Indianapolis. For example, in 1990, only 1% of the Salt Lake City population identified as LGBTQ, but by 2014, that number had grown to 5% — making it the seventh largest LGBTQ urban population in the country.

Economics plays a large role in the trend; the cost to live in many safe-haven cities has skyrocketed. For example, the cost of living in New York City rose by 23% in just five years between 2009 and 2014 while in San Francisco, the median rent price was nearing $4,500 by 2016.  

Meanwhile, numerous smaller cities in red states, including Salt Lake City and Indianapolis, offer shorter commutes, cheaper rent, and less competition for the good-paying jobs.

A pride flag flies in front of the Historic Mormon Temple as part of an LGBTQ protest in Salt Lake City, Utah. Photo by George Frey/Getty Images.

Progress on LGBTQ issues across the country is another reason for the exodus.

There have been a number of federal actions over the last 15 years to solidify equal rights,including President Barack Obama’s executive order protecting LGBTQ federal workers from discrimination and federal and Supreme Court actions that effectively legalized same-sex marriage across a number of red states, including Arizona, Utah, and Indiana. Several cities have also passed local laws protecting the LGBTQ community, including housing and employment protections and benefits for domestic partners of city employees.

A mother to two lesbian daughters holds a sign while watching the Gay Pride Parade on June 28, 2015, in New York City. Photo by Yana Paskova/Getty Images.

Of course, there's a long way to go — many cities are hotbeds for legal challenges to LGBTQ rights, and 28 states in the U.S. still lack LGBTQ employment discrimination protections.

Rick Scot moved from West Hollywood and bought a house in a suburb of North Carolina with his husband because of cost. But North Carolina is also the birthplace of a controversial law — House Bill 2 — that prevents cities from enacting their own anti-discrimination laws and restricted transgender bathroom access statewide. The law has yet to be successfully repealed.

"I have friends and colleagues who won’t come here," Scot told the L.A. Times.

For some in the LGBTQ community, living in a red state also offers the opportunity to be involved in bringing about real change at a local level.

Protesters in City Creek Park in Salt Lake City in 2015. Photo by George Frey/Getty Images.

New York City and San Francisco didn’t become gay-friendly cities overnight. Change was gradual and hard-fought — and it happened largely because the activists who lived there demanded it.

That's why in the ABC limited series “When We Rise,” Cleve Jones decides to stay put and fight for gay rights in San Francisco rather than go off to Europe to find a better home with his friend.

Roma and Cleve in the ABC miniseries, "When We Rise." Screenshot used with permission.

And today, LGBTQ activists have the opportunity to drive change in red-state cities that have less friendly laws. Some activists are even calling these cities "the new frontier."

That is why Tyler Curry, who calls himself a "blue-ribbon homosexual in a bright red state," has chosen to stay and live Texas — so that he can help bring about change for everyone. "People’s minds can be changed and victories can be won in each state government, no matter how difficult it may seem," Curry wrote in an editorial on the Advocate. "Twenty years ago, the state and federal rights that we now have were merely pipe dreams, but our community refused to let hate beat out hope."

He continued, "Today, we still need to be steadfast in our commitment to LGBT rights across the country, and that means staying put in our red states and demanding respect."

Watch the full trailer for ABC's "When We Rise," which begins Feb. 27 at 9 p.m. Eastern/8 p.m. Central:

Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

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Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

The mesmerizing lost art of darning knit fabric.

For most of human history, people had to make their own clothing by hand, and sewing skills were subsequently passed down from generation to generation. Because clothing was so time-consuming and labor-intensive to make, people also had to know how to repair clothing items that got torn or damaged in some way.

The invention of sewing and knitting machines changed the way we acquire clothing, and the skills people used to possess have largely gone by the wayside. If we get a hole in a sock nowadays, we toss it and replace it. Most of us have no idea how to darn a sock or fix a hole in any knit fabric. It's far easier for us to replace than to repair.

But there are still some among us who do have the skills to repair clothing in a way that makes it look like the rip, tear or hole never happened, and to watch them do it is mesmerizing.

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Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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